By Steve Zimmerman, Managing Director
of Brokerage | The Retail Connection
Last week’s ICSC convention in Las
Vegas was attended by almost 30,000 retail real estate professionals
and it had the most positive vibe we have felt in several years. With 10 consecutive months of improving retail sales and a rising
stock market, the economy is clearly recovering.
In DFW we have been fortunate to be
ahead of this curve. In fact, The Retail Connection experienced
record transaction volume in 2010 and that trend is continuing upward
in 2011. The market’s increased activity can be attributed to
The local economy has recovered much faster than the rest of the nation as reflected by DFW being the number one city in the US for job growth in the past 12 months;
Healthier retail sales encouraged retailers to move off the sidelines in 2010 and they are continuing to actively look for sites in 2011;
Centers have stabilized. Their owners (and in some cases new owners) are in a better position to make deals;
Lending has begun to thaw, and centers with tremendous potential are becoming great opportunities for investors. The Retail Connection’s purchase of Village on the Parkway with Lincoln Property Company and Fidelity Real Estate Group is a perfect example.
The overall feeling after the ICSC
convention is one of cautious optimism, and the companies that have
the relationships, influence and capital will continue to have
exceptional opportunities ahead.